Wrenzie’s 5 SF Giants Draft Prospects to Watch:
James Wood, OF, IMG Academy (Florida)
Quick Ceiling Tool Grades: Hit 50 | Power 70 | Speed 55 | Arm 60 | Glove 50
Have you ever had that moment where you say, “wow, I want that player on my team” when you see a highlight? That is what happened when I saw this short clip.
That is a pitch right around young IMG Academy outfielder James Wood’s jawline. He not only made contact with it but drove it well over the right-field wall. Add in above-average speed and a plus arm, and I am all-in on Wood’s prospects.
When Wood squares a baseball, the exit velocity regularly registers in the triple digits. And get this, it is a handsy swing. Mostly relying on his wrists to do the work, and he still mashes baseballs. Once he starts to use his lower half better, he could reach another level entirely. While many around baseball struggle to elevate pitches high in the zone, Wood has the bat speed to still turn on pitches up as well.
That does have consequences. Wood’s height creates some obvious holes that pro pitching will take advantage of. However, he’s already shown growth in his pitch selection and strike-zone control. From what I saw in his 2021 clips, he is already making the strides necessary to develop an average hit tool, which would be more than enough to tap into his plus-plus power potential.
His speed could regress as he matures, but Wood’s defensive profile is somewhat similar to current Giants prospects Hunter Bishop. No center fielders look like either of them, but both have all the physical tools to be above-average big-league defenders. Only time will tell if they can maintain their athleticism as they develop.
If the Giants select Wood, I would be singing praises. This is a home run swing. Wood will be right in there with the most exciting prospects in the system the second he steps foot in the batter’s box.
Here, enjoy one more highlight for the road.
The first round of the 2021 MLB Draft is scheduled for June 11th. Until then, Wrenzie and Marc will keep you updated on all the intriguing prospects that could hear their names called with the SF Giants selection.